| Welcome to the December edition of the National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter! We hope you are having a lovely holiday season, and that you were able to take advantage of our Special Holiday Savings issue last month. If not, there are more coupons in this edition, so read on! |
Around this time each year, when Christmas is fast approaching, we also begin to look toward the coming year and to think about New Year's Resolutions. The New Year is a wonderful occasion to set goals in any number of areas of your life. Many of you may have health-related goals for 2005, so this month we'll offer you some Strategies For A Healthy New Year to help you start the new year on the right foot. Read on as we discuss the following topics: If you're new to the newsletter or you'd like to reread any of our newsletters, you can find all of our past issues on our website. In the coming months we'll have more educational articles about the aggravating factors behind allergy, asthma, and sinus problems as well as helpful tips and valuable subscriber-only coupons. To top it off, we're giving away an Austin Air HM-400 Air Purifier, valued at $399.99, to one lucky subscriber every month!
Katie Weaver & The National Allergy Newsletter Team
Strategies For A Healthy New Year
Making Your Bedroom An Allergy-Safe Zone
Our regular readers have heard this one before, but we cannot emphasize it enough! Doctors agree that the bedroom is the most important area in which to control allergens. With carpeting, mattresses, box springs, pillows, bedding, clothes and upholstered furniture in most of our bedrooms, there is plenty of space for dust mites to hide. Make it your goal to reduce your allergen exposure in the room where you spend the most hours of the day.
Limiting Your Exposure To Pollen And Animal Dander
- Cover your mattresses, pillows, box springs and comforters with zippered mite-proof encasings. We've sold millions of them and manufacture most of the fabric encasings we sell right here in Georgia. We stand behind every single one as absolutely mite-proof!
- Wash sheets, blankets, pillowcases, mattress pads and comforters (if possible) every 10-14 days in hot (140o F) water. Encasings don't need washing as often. Refer to our Encasing Care Page for specific instructions. If you don't want the wear and tear of hot water washes or are concerned about the possible scalding hazard, consider using de-mite Laundry Additive. The active ingredient of this popular product is proven to eliminate dust mite allergen in your clothes and laundry.
- Remove stuffed toys or use toys that are easily machine-washable like our Allergy Pals stuffed critters. Some doctors recommend putting stuffed toys in sealed bags and placing them in the freezer overnight to kill mites. However, this does not remove the mite allergen like hot-water washing would.
- Treat upholstered furniture and carpeting with an allergen-reducing treatment spray or power.
- Vacuum often with a HEPA filtered vacuum cleaner. HEPA is a high-tech media with the wonderful ability to filter the air so it removes dust mite allergen, animal dander and pollen that passes through it. Our HEPA vacuums won't kick particles up and back into the air as you clean.
I've been using allergy products for a long time (remember, I was my Dad's test subject for all sorts of the items we still sell today), but animal dander is still a big allergy trigger of mine. And even if I manage to avoid cats, this in combination with fall ragweed pollen usually means at least a few sniffles. Here are some healthy tips as you think about avoiding common allergens that you may not have as much control over, like pet dander and pollens.
Reducing The Use Of Household Chemicals
- If owning a new pet is in your plan for 2005, look for breeds that produce less dander and have less hair to shed like Greyhounds, Poodles or Wheaten Terriers. If you or a family member already has a pet, Quick Bath Wipes and allerpet Solution. are both ways reduce your exposure to animal dander. Most important, keep pets out of the bedroom as much as possible.
- When visiting homes that have pets, be prepared. Wear a filtration mask (if it won't offend anyone), or at the very least, ask your hosts to keep the cat or dog away from areas of the house where you will be staying. If possible ask them to vacuum before you arrive. The Dyson Animal is a great vacuum for pet owners to gobble up pet hair and animal dander.
- Consider using a HEPA air cleaner. I love my Whirlpool Whispure HEPA air cleaner. I can barely hear it running here in the corner of my office, and I sure notice a difference when it's off for a while. Room air cleaners work best cleaning the air in a single room, so investigate which machines are best for the various rooms you may wish to purify - see our August 2004 edition on indoor air cleaning.
Several studies released in the past couple of years point to the potential dangers of household chemicals. Prolonged exposure has been linked to asthma, among other medical problems. Perhaps your under-sink storage area needs an overhaul in the coming year!
Fending Off Colds And Sinus Infections
- Evaluate the cleaning products you use now - do they contain potentially harmful chemicals like phthalates or irritating fragrances you or family members may be sensitive to? It is important not just to see that something is called "Natural" or "Biodegradable", but to know the ingredients are safe.
- Experiment with some chemical-free cleaning products. EnviroRite household products offer an excellent, truly all-natural way to get almost any job done without using harmful chemicals.
- Limit your use of other synthetics in your home like pesticides or air fresheners. There are safer alternatives. For example, a mix of borax and sugar in a vented jelly jar is a simple anti-ant recipe. For air freshening this holiday I have taken to simmering some cinnamon sticks, orange peel and cloves for a wonderful Christmas-spice scent.
- Familiarize yourself with the dangers of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) like formaldehyde, ammonia and benzene, which have been linked to a variety of conditions such as asthma. Evaluate potential VOC sources in your home. For example, if you will be embarking on a painting project in your home this year, look for paints and stains that are low in VOCs. New carpeting also emits VOC's along with some furniture stains and glues. Our Austin Air HealthMate and HealthMate Plus are outfitted with filters to cleanse a room's air of VOC's.
Believe it or not, you can take action to defend against the colds and sinus problems that may be awaiting you in 2005. Here's how:
Eating Right And Taking Care Of Your Body
- Irrigate! Countless numbers of our customers use this ancient method of "washing" or "rinsing" the nose. Serious irrigation proponents opt for the doctor-developed Hydro Pulse System. For novices, I recommend a positive-pressure irrigator like the Nasaline or NasoPure Nasal Wash.
- Avoid mold. Recent studies have shown that exposure to mold and mildew can have a direct effect on one's likelihood for developing sinusitis. Many times chronic sinus infections are caused by fungus growing in the nose. Dehumidification is your best defence. For heavy-duty dehumidification, there are no better options than the Santa Fe and Santa Fe Rx whole-house dehumidifiers. We also have smaller capacity Whirlpool units available. To directly defend against mold in the sinuses, get into the Agrumax habit. Agrumax is an all-natural, plant-based concentrate that, when applied regularly, eliminates mold at its source. (This formula was used as part of a nasal spray protocol for participants in a recently published study showing the link between mold and sinusitis.
- Wear a mask. Masks are not just for springtime yard work. In this winter season of colds and flu bugs, wearing an N95 or N100 mask may be a good habit to form for '05. Today's high-tech masks are quite effective for limiting your exposure to the flu, and can help you fend off colds as well.
Each year, millions of individuals make commitments to eat right and take care of their bodies in the coming year. It's a good goal to have, especially for the allergy sufferer. Your wellness may not just depend on cleansing your environment of offending allergens, but on making some other lifestyle changes as well.
Getting Adequate Rest
- Eating right is an important factor to wellness. While this means eating disease-fighting fruits and veggies, it also means being sensitive to you or your child's potential food allergies. Constantly fussy babies may be signaling that something in their diet is offending their system. Children who start to show allergic symptoms may be reacting to one or more offending foods in their diet. One of my first actions when I feel congested is to limit my dairy intake because as a child I was milk-allergic. In addition to dairy, many doctors also recommend eliminating eggs, legumes (like peanuts) and tree-nuts from a childs diet to see if any of those foods are causing allergic symptoms.
- Build your immune system. My mother calls herself a "Petri dish" - any illness in a room will find its way to her and germinate. If you feel this way, there are ways you can boost your body's ability to fight sickness. Our bodies are incredibly complex with inter-related functions, which is why we offer wellness supplements like the Complete Thymic Formula and other all-natural options for helping with allergy and asthma symptoms - as well as digestion.
- Practice non-drug symptom management when possible. I will confess that for a piercing headache, an Advil or Ibuprofen is my first step. However, National Allergy believes that there are ways that we can fight (and prevent) illness without pills and prescription drugs. This coming year could represent a whole new outlook for you as you work to discover the reasons behind some of your family's aches and pains. Are persistent headaches a sign you may have sinusitis? Stomach aches could point to poor digestive health (see Dr. Burgstiner's Complete Digestion Enzyme). Is your child's constant stuffy nose a cold, or their body's reaction to offending allergens in the home? You can take more control than you may have realized over your family's health this year. Remember to always follow your physician's direction regarding prescriptions and your health regimen.
- Exercise. It should go without saying, but exercise is a major way we can fend off illness, promote wellness and feel more energized. There are many high-profile athletes who are asthma sufferers, so don't let asthma symptoms keep you or your family from being active. Consult with your physician about what activities he or she recommends for your particular condition, particularly in the cold winter months.
One of the most important parts of taking care of our well being is to give our body the rest it needs. In fact, research presented at the American College of Chest Physicians' annual meeting showed that lack of rest can play a role in both the day and night symptoms of asthma. Lack of sleep can also affect our immune function and cause decreased concentration. Here are some ways to control stress and feel more rested.
You may have already implemented some of these strategies in your life. Though your New Years resolution choices may seem endless, we firmly believe that a consistent commitment to eliminating allergens in your environment and forming habits of wellness will have long-term payoff for you and your family. I hope these tips have given you some ideas for how to accomplish a few of your goals. And whether your resolution is to read more biographies, eat less candy or to implement a wellness lifestyle, I wish you success and patient perseverance. May you and yours have a wonderful holiday season. Happy New Year!
- Be aware of your stress level. In an article published in Thorax, a journal of the British Medical Association (BMA), researchers found that stress quadruples the risk of an asthma attack. And like lack of sleep, stress can wear down your body's defenses against offending allergens, colds and other sicknesses.
- Have strategies to "de-stress." A friend of mine used to counsel overburdened college students with these wise words: "take off your watch and quit something." If you are overburdened already, you may do well to follow the same advice in order to regain a healthier lifestyle in this coming year. If back or neck pain is a stress symptom in your life, try using MediBeads Moist Heat Therapy for a warm, relaxing break. MediBeads are available in a variety of styles depending on your pain area.
- Find snoring solutions. If snoring (yours or someone else's) is keeping you up at night, there are a variety of things you can try to open those breathing passages . Serious snorers or sufferers from sleep apnea should see a sleep physician.
This information is for educational purposes only. Always consult with your doctor first about your specific condition, treatment options and other health concerns you may have.
If you have additional questions about the content in this newsletter, email us at email@example.com or call one of our phone experts at 1-800-522-1448.
This Month's Exclusive Offers - Expire 1/10/2005
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| A new HEPA-filtered vacuum cleaner is a step in the right direction toward having a healthier, more dust-free home in the new year. We'll ship your entire order for free when you order one of our Dyson, Electrolux, Nilfisk, or Eureka vacuum cleaners. All vacuums have a manufacturerƒs warranty and are backed by our 60-day satisfaction guarantee! |
| || Our dust mite treatment products either kill the mite or render its allergen harmless to you. They can be used on carpets, rugs and sometimes upholstered furniture. We recommend first treating the rooms where you spend the most time. And although these products have been tested and shown to be safe, please read the entire product label prior to use. |
To take advantage of these offers and the other offers in this newsletter, use the promotional code available only to subscribers during checkout!
Help Your Friends People you care about can benefit from allergen avoidance. Help them learn more about minimizing the allergens in their environment by sending them this issue of the National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter. They'll thank you for it!
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